Arousing curiosity and activating prior knowledge are closely related instructional activities. Curiosity arousal gives students the chance to consider what they know already about the material to be read. Arousing curiosity helps students raise questions that they can answer only by giving thought to what they read.
Creating Story Impressions
Using story impressions is an instrumental strategy that arouses curiosity and allows students to anticipate story content.
Story impressions get readers to predict the events of the story that will be read, by providing them with fragments of the actual content. After reading the set of clues, the students are asked to render them comprehensible by using them to compose a story of their own in advance of reading the actual tale.
The object is not for the student to guess the details or the exact relations among the events and characters of the story, but to simply compare their own story guess to the author’s actual account.
Creating Story Impressions
Steps to follow in the story impression strategy:
1. Introduce the strategy.
2. Use large newsprint, a transparency, or SMART board to show students the story chain.
3. Read the clues together, and explain how the arrows link one clue to another in a logical order.
4. Demonstrate how to write a story guess.
5. Invite the students to read the actual story silently, or initiate a shared reading experience. Afterward, discuss how the class-composed version is similar to and different from the author’s story.
6. For subsequent stories, use story impressions to have students write individual story predictions. Or have them work in cooperative teams to write a group-composed story guess.
Establishing Problematic Perspectives
Creating problems to be solved or perspectives from which readers approach text material provides an imaginative entry into a text selection. For example, the teacher’s role in creating problematic perspectives is:
1) Providing the time to discuss the problem, raising questions, and seeking possible solutions before reading and then
2) Assigning the reading material that will help lead to resolution and conceptual development.
Creating a perspective (a role) for the student is one way to get into reading. Students in these roles find themselves solving problems that force them to use their knowledge and experience.
Students’ ability to visualize what they are reading is an important component for developing comprehension. Guided imagery allows students to explore concepts by creating mental images. Samples (1977) recommends guided imagery, among other things, as s means of:
Building an experience base for inquiry, discussion, and group work
Exploring and stretching concepts
Solving and clarifying problems
Exploring history and the future
Exploring other lands and worlds
Prediction strategies activate thought about the content before reading. Students must rely on what they know through previous study and experience to make educated guesses about the material to be read.
You can facilitate student-centered purposes by creating anticipation about the meaning of what will be read.
An anticipation guide is a series of statements to which students must respond individually before reading the text. Their value lies in the discussion that takes place after the exercise.
Analyze the material to be read. Determine the major ideas- implicit and explicit- with which students will interact.
Write those ideas in short, clear declarative statements. These statements should in some way reflect the world in which the students live or about which they know.
Put these statements in a format that will elicit anticipation and prediction.
Discuss the students’ predictions and anticipations before...
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